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PhD Admissions

Starting July 1, 2018, all supplemental materials and letters of recommendation must be submitted via the Graduate Application Supplemental Materials Upload Website. See complete instructions on this page.

Who Can Apply

The basic requirement for the PhD program is the completion of an MA in second language studies, applied linguistics, or second or foreign language education. We also welcome applicants with graduate degrees in related disciplines such as anthropology, education, modern languages, linguistics, and psychology, although some additional coursework may be needed. A degree in literature will not be suitable preparation for entry, however.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to contact Graduate Faculty member(s) with whom they might wish to work.

Support

Each year, four years of guaranteed funding are offered to the four most qualified applicants to the PhD in SLS program, pending availability of funds. Financial assistance is in the form of a graduate assistantship (GAship) in teaching and/or research, as long as the enrolled student maintains a GPA of 3.5 or higher and takes 6 credits per semester (with the exception of those who have reached the dissertation writing stage, or ABD status). The graduate assistantship is a 0.50 FTE appointment that provides 100% tuition exemption; a stipend; and, after a minimum of three months, health plan benefits. Student fees are not covered ($451 per semester for Academic Year 2018–2019).

Applicants who are required to take the TOEFL or IELTS by Graduate Division must meet the minimum score and subtest score requirements for graduate teaching assistants (GTAs). Applicants who are exempt from having to take the TOEFL or IELTS are also exempt from the minimum score requirements for GTA consideration (refer to table under How to Apply step 1, Take Standardized Exam).

Additional information regarding support can be found on the Financial Support for PhD Students and Funding pages.

How to Apply

 

APPLICATION DEADLINES Fall Semester Enrollment
Spring Semester Enrollment
Doctor of Philosophy in Second Language Studies January 1
September 1
Semester begins in August. Semester begins in January.

Click on each of the following steps for detailed instructions. All materials—online application and fee, letters of recommendation, and supplemental materials including score report(s) and transcript(s)—are due by the application deadline.

1. Take Standardized Exam

GRE

Required for all PhD applicants.
Scores cannot be more than 5 years old.
No minimum score required; preferred minimums shown in following table.

GRE

Analytical Writing

Quantitative Reasoning (QR)

Verbal
Reasoning (VR)

QR + VR

SLS Preferred Minimum

3.5

150

150

300

TOEFL or IELTS

Required for most applicants whose first language is not English; see UHM Graduate Division policy on English Proficiency.
Scores cannot be more than 2 years old.
Minimum scores required for admissions and consideration for graduate teaching assistantship.

TOEFL iBT

TOEFL PBT

IELTS

Minimum for Admissions

100

600

7.0

SLS Preferred Minimum

105

620

7.5

Minimum for Graduate Teaching Assistantship

100
(25 L / 25 S)

600

7.0

 

2. Prepare Supplemental Materials

All supplemental materials are due by the application deadline.

i. Statement of Purpose
In a maximum of 1,000 words, outline your academic and professional objectives and reasons for applying to the PhD in Second Language Studies. Describe your research interests, possible areas for dissertation research, which faculty member(s) you are interested in working with, and career plans.

ii. Supplemental Information Form
Please download and complete the Supplemental Information Form (PDF, 1 page, 109KB).

iii. Current Resume or Curriculum Vitae

iv. Unofficial Score Report
An unofficial score report for the GRE (and if required, TOEFL or IELTS) is required at the time of application.
Note. Admitted students are required to submit official score reports in order to enroll. If you wish to submit official scores at the time of application (this is not required), please refer to the instructions to Submit Official Test Score Report under the Document Requirements for Admitted Students section.

v. Unofficial Transcript(s)
One transcript is required from each postsecondary institution attended, including any study abroad or exchange programs, summer programs, and non-degree work and extension programs.
Note. Admitted students are required to submit official transcripts in order to enroll. If you wish to submit official transcripts at the time of application (this is not required), please refer to the instructions to Submit Official Transcript(s) under the Document Requirements for Admitted Students section.

vi. Research Paper(s)
Please submit 1–3 writing samples that provide evidence of your ability to do independent scholarly research. They can include your MA thesis, publications in books or journals, or other research reports.

 

3. Submit Online Application and $100 Application Fee

Apply online by first creating a Login ID and PIN. Remember your Login ID and PIN for steps 4 and 5.

Note. This step must be completed in order for you to use the Graduate Application Supplemental Materials Upload Website for requesting letters of recommendation and uploading supplemental materials.

 

4. Request Three (3) Letters of Recommendation

Request letters from three individuals who know you in an academic setting. Generally, letters from employers in nonacademic settings do not provide perspectives on your academic abilities. Ideally, at least one reference should relate to your stated areas of interest, and all letters should be recent. Use of official university or institutional letterhead is preferred.

After logging in to the Graduate Application Supplemental Materials Upload Website, click Request a Recommendation for each of your recommenders. Use of official university or institutional email addresses is preferred.

 

5. Upload Supplemental Materials

Upload all documents in PDF format using the Graduate Application Supplemental Materials Upload Website.

For expediency, please use the following naming convention, including the numerals in the file names:
1_LastnameFirstname_SOP.pdf
2_LastnameFirstname_SuppInfo.pdf
3_LastnameFirstname_Resume.pdf or 3_LastnameFirstname_CV.pdf
4_LastnameFirstname_GRE
(IF REQUIRED) 4_LastnameFirstname_TOEFL or 4_LastnameFirstname_IELTS
5_LastnameFirstname_Transcript.pdf
5_LastnameFirstname_Transcript2.pdf
6_LastnameFirstname_ResearchPaper/Thesis/Publication.pdf

Additional/optional files:
6_LastnameFirstname_ResearchPaper/Thesis/Publication.pdf
6_LastnameFirstname_ResearchPaper/Thesis/Publication.pdf

 

Document Requirements for Admitted Students

Click on each of the following steps for detailed instructions.

1. Submit Statement of Intention to Register to Graduate Division

Once admitted, students will receive an official letter of admittance from Graduate Division (via postal mail). Admitted students are asked to respond with their Statement of Intention to Register (SIR) to gradsir@hawaii.edu as soon as possible after receiving the official letter, so that they can access the University’s services in a timely manner.

 

2. Submit Official Test Score Report

Admitted students are required to submit official standardized exam scores in order to enroll. Official score reports must be sent directly to Graduate Division. The Educational Testing Service (ETS) code for the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa is 4867. Remember that GRE scores cannot be more than five years old, and TOEFL and IELTS scores cannot be more than 2 years old.

 

3. Submit Official Transcript(s)

Admitted students are required to submit official transcripts in order to enroll. Official transcripts must be sent directly to Graduate Division from the issuing institution(s), or in sealed institutional envelopes if submitted with the application.

Mail transcripts to:
Graduate Division
2540 Maile Way
Spalding Hall 354
Honolulu, HI 96822

 

4. FOR INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS Submit Confidential Financial Statement

International applicants need to show proof of sufficient funding to cover all educational and living expenses for a 9-month budget, including expenses for any accompanying spouse or children. Upon admission to UHM, only international applicants with proof of funding will receive visa documents.
Be sure to complete the Confidential Financial Statement for International Applicants as soon as possible to avoid delays in applying for your student visa.

 

Questions?

Email grdchr@hawaii.edu or call (808) 956-6131.